On June 11, 2014 a Workshop organized by the UNHCR and the UNDP and facilitated by the North LEDA was set to gather members of International and Local NGOs to study the impact of the Syrian Crisis on livelihoods in Tripoli and T5 area (Tripoli, Minnieh-Dannieh, Zgharta, Bchareh, Koura, Batroun) in order to review the response strategies and combine their visions to create a livelihood strategy in Tripoli, participants were from UNDP, UNHCR, IOM, Social Movement, Safadi Foundation, Al Majmoua, BIAT, OTI, Women Solidarity Association, Ministry of Social Affairs, ECDAR NGO. The event took place at the Forum of the Handicapped in El Mina, Tripoli.
The workshop was initiated by a welcoming word. Later after, each of the organizations participating in the workshop has introduced itself to the attendees and presented briefly their role and engagements.
The main purpose of this workshop was to study the impact of the Syrian crisis over the different sectors of the Lebanese economy and to analyze the impact of this crisis in order to make a response that can help to reduce the maximum of its influence over the Lebanese society and economy.
For this matter, the UNHCR and the UNDP elaborated the current situation of the refugees through some presentations where they could explain in brief the interrelation between the refugees, host communities, livelihoods and social cohesions and discussed the Labor Law and the rights of employee under the employment contract.
The presentation concerning the Social Cohesion and Livelihoods Sectors was divided into three sections: Background, Strategy and Response, where the main resources of tension caused in the Lebanese society were indicated as follows: economic pressure, competition over access in livelihoods, prejudices and stigmatization, unbalanced assistance… moving to the strategy that has to be adopted in order to reach the best response to the crisis.
After this presentation, the Labor Law and the rights of employees under the Lebanese employment contracts were presented in details, emphasizing on the specific procedures to be taken for the Syrian workers and their categorizations, the work permits and penalties, as well as for the role of government in their employment.
Following this presentation many questions were asked regarding the work permits, the number of Syrian workers registered in Lebanon, the mechanism to protect the Lebanese labor from the foreign worker and about the social cohesion in the area; However, regarding the number of Syrian workers registered in Lebanon, the collection of data is still on the go so there are no accurate numbers recorded yet.
In addition to that, they discussed briefly the situation of the SMEs in Lebanon within the additional controls placed between 2013 and 2014, concerning the approval of establishment of business, the ownership of foreigner and the capital increase demand. They also presented the list of business entities in Lebanon and mentioned the existence of an ecosystem that supports the SMEs and Start-Ups in addition to the role of the government in supporting these SMEs as well.
After have given the presentations, 3 round table sessions were done, the participants were divided into groups represented by a moderator. The round table sessions discussed the following subjects: First round table: Impact of Syrian Crisis on livelihood conditions in Tripoli+5 areas, second round table: Response Strategies in T+5 areas and third round table: Approaches to enhance livelihoods in the T+5. Each moderator presented the work of its group.
.A discussion about the Introduction to and Creation of the Livelihood Working group in Tripoli +5 Area was opened in the end of the workshop. This discussion was about sharing ideas and thoughts to write down a set of objectives to work within in the next meetings under the main title of “Increase reliance for the livelihood condition in T5”.